Daily news - 27th March 2017

Weekly subscribe button

UK news

Overdose antidote takes harm-reduction centre stage

One of our selection of hot topics, analyses of important issues which sometimes generate heated debate. Programmes distributing the opiate overdose antidote naloxone have become the great new hope for curbing the rise in drug-related deaths, but England is lagging behind the rest of the UK | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

New research reveals young people’s views on new psychoactive substances

Sixty-six percent of young people surveyed had tried new psychoactive substances (NPS, formerly known as ‘legal highs’) at least once, according to new research. Those surveyed also reported significant adverse effects, such as delusions, hallucinations, panic and anxiety | Addaction, UK

Say why to drugs - PCP

Latest podcast | Suzi Cage, UK

Switching to vaping cuts fire death risk, London Fire Brigade safety chief tells smokers

Switching from tobacco smoking to vaping could cut fire deaths, a fire chief said today | London Evening Standard, UK

Are Kids Really Huffing Burning Wheelie Bins Again?

C'mon, they're not actually trying to get high off trash smoke, are they? Are they? | VICE, UK

Buckfast makers hit out at copycat Easter eggs as they warn children may drink notorious tonic wine

The makers of Buckfast have hit out at an Easter egg sold with a bottle of the tonic wine in the box as they warn children may drink the alcohol | Telegraph, UK

Since 2015, 14000 drug-drivers have been convicted in England ... in Scotland the figure is just 74

74 drivers have lost their licences in Scotland since 2015 for driving under the influence of drugs, raising fears that many motorists who are flouting the law are failing to be detected | Herald, UK

Under-18 warning on selling e-cigs

Trading standards officers are warning that retailers must enforce the ban on anyone under 18 buying e-cigarettes after a recent successful prosecution | Northern Echo, UK

Anti-smoker Prince Charles bans tobacco from playgrounds at his 2,000-acre stately home in Scotland 

Prince Charles has had a lifelong aversion to tobacco since his heavy-smoking grandfather, George VI, died of lung cancer when he was just three | Mail Online, UK

Police's 'rare objection' to Bridgend hub's alcohol plan

Plans to sell alcohol at a community hub in Bridgend county would have a "negative impact" on the village, police have said | BBC, UK

Cannabis festival '420' will return to Manchester's Platt Fields Park this year

Hundreds of people are set to attend the pro-weed event | Manchester Evening News, UK

RAPt launches new partnership in Hull

RAPt and DISC have today (Friday 24 March) launched a new partnership to offer services for people in Hull who are in recovery from addiction | RAPt, UK

Props from the Trainspotting sequel go under the hammer

Proceeds from sale at Mulberry Bank Auction House in Glasgow will be split between Glasgow charity Calton Athletic, which helps rehabilitate people with drug and alcohol addictions, and Edinburgh-based youth charity The Junction, which has Trainspotting author Irvine Welsh as patron | BBC, UK

Vicar lied about hundreds of funerals to steal £100,000 from church before spending it on alcohol and books

A vicar with a drink problem lied about hundreds of funerals to steal more than £100,000 from a church before spending it on alcohol and books, a court has heard | Telegraph, UK

Jerry Hall convinced Mick Jagger to quit drugs as they threatened his good looks, royal socialite claims

Jerry Hall convinced Mick Jagger to quit drugs only after she warned him of the damage they'd do his looks, according to a royal socialite who knows the couple | Telegraph, UK

BBC film crew spots wanted drug smuggler Terrence Earle

One of Wales' most wanted criminals was caught after he blundered into BBC cameras filming in the Netherlands | BBC, UK

Manchester City player missed drugs test last September over hotel mix-up

A Manchester City first-team player missed a drugs test last September because the club had failed to inform anti-doping officials of his correct whereabouts, it has emerged | Telegraph, UK

Charities are the eyes, ears and conscience of society, says Committee

The House of Lords Select Committee on Charities today publishes its report, 'Stronger charities for a stronger society' (PDF), in which the Committee praises the important role that charities play in our society | Parliament.UK


International news

Developing Countries: Smoking

To ask Her Majesty’s Government which countries the UK will be supporting as part of its international support for smoking control; and when that work will start in each country | They work for you, UK

Trafficked and enslaved: the teenagers tending UK cannabis farms

Vietnamese teens are tending Britain’s makeshift drug factories in empty buildings from suburban homes to a nuclear bunker. Here are their stories | Guardian, UK

UK police criticised for failure to help enslaved cannabis farmers

Independent anti-slavery commissioner urges police forces to target criminal gangs trafficking Vietnamese teenagers to UK | Guardian, UK

Australia's use of stimulants such as meth second only to Slovakia, report finds

National study of drug use through analysis of sewage finds high rate of ice use compared with countries in Europe | Guardian, UK

‘Deaths of despair’ surge among US white working class

Legacy of drugs, alcohol and suicide will weigh on economy for years, says study | FT, UK

Deadliest place to deal - iPlayer

Rodrigo Duterte swept to power in the Philippines promising to clean up the country by ‘slaughtering’ anyone involved in illegal drugs. Livvy Haydock investigates | BBC, UK

China Vows to Intensify Drug War

Chinese officials have called for an intensification of counter-narcotic efforts, after months of strengthening the country’s international drug control ties with neighbouring nations | Talking Drugs, UK

The FBI is still struggling to employ hackers because they’re all smoking weed

Weed, low pay, and a lack of female employees, are what's leaving the US susceptible to cyber attacks | Independent, UK

Physicist invents first ever drip-free wine bottle

Wave goodbye to constant bottle-neck wiping | Independent, UK

Customs seize 15k litres of laundered fuel and almost 1,250 litres of 'smuggled' alcohol in separate raids

Revenue officers have seized 15,000 litres of laundered fuel and almost 1,250 litres of undeclared alcohol in separate raids today | Independent, Ireland

USI: Drug information campaign 2017

Second phase of a student drug campaign focuses on synthetic cannabinoids and mephedrone | Drugs.ie, Ireland

European Facility Survey Questionnaire (EFSQ) package

The European Facility Survey Questionnaire (EFSQ) is a data collection instrument applicable in any European country or in any country worldwide interested in surveying facilities that provide interventions to drug users | EMCDDA, Portugal

Study confirms prescription weight-loss medication helps with opiate addiction recovery

Researchers from The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston have confirmed that a prescription weight-loss pill decreases the urge to use opiates such as oxycodone | Medical Xpress, USA

These Are The 2 Key Ways People Get Hooked On Prescription Opioids

How opioid crisis trickled down to American’s youth | Huffington Post, USA

Researchers just uncovered a simple way to help combat the opioid epidemic

It’s not the only answer, but it could be part of the solution to the deadliest drug crisis in US history | Vox, USA

A deadly epidemic: Addiction to opioids has put an entire generation at risk

The grisly trend – fatalities from drug overdoses in Maine reached an all-time high in 2016 – only seems to be getting worse, prompting one caregiver to lament: ‘Where is the outrage?’ This 10-part examination lays out the ramifications of the crisis, mining answers from the human toll by telling the stories of those we’ve lost | Portland Press Herald, USA

Should You "Go Dry" for Your Health?

From your friend who's currently off the bottle for Lent to the coworkers who asked you to join them for Dry January, abstaining from alcohol for a set period of time has become a full-fledged health trend | Wine Spectator, USA

Colorado Has a Plan to Avoid a Marijuana Crackdown by President Trump

Colorado is considering an unusual strategy to protect its nascent marijuana industry from a potential federal crackdown, even at the expense of hundreds of millions of dollars in tax collections | TIME, USA

'Good Samaritan' Overdose Bill Fails in Oklahoma Legislature

A so-called 'Good Samaritan' bill that wouldn't criminally charge a person who is either having or observing a drug overdose and calls police for help has failed to advance in the Oklahoma Legislature | USNews, USA

Most remaining smokers in US have low socioeconomic status

Disparities among smokers widening as most vulnerable find it hardest to quit | Science Daily, USA

When a president says I'll kill you - video

A film about President Duerte of the Phillipines | NYTimes, USA

Task-force leader on legalizing marijuana urges prohibition, for now

A former Liberal cabinet minister who recently chaired a panel guiding Ottawa's push to legalize cannabis says police everywhere should enforce the existing prohibition of marijuana, despite several communities in British Columbia choosing to regulate – not raid – illegal pot shops | Globe and Mail, Canada

The Preventable Epidemic: How Safe-Injection Sites Are Being Brought To Toronto

During the late afternoon hours on New Year’s Eve 2015, Amy Wright, a community support worker in the 24-hour harm reduction drop-in at Sistering, noticed a homeless woman with no jacket or shoes, laying on the ground in her own vomit outside a busy Starbucks on Bay and Dundas in downtown Toronto | Torontoist, Canada

National wastewater monitoring program (PDF)

In response to growing concern around crystal methylamphetamine use in Australia, a National Ice Taskforce was established... One of the recommendations of the Taskforce focused on improving and expanding available data sources to provide a more accurate understanding of drug use in Australia. This document is the first of nine public reports which will share results of a national wastewater drug monitoring program over the next three years. This data will provide statistically valid datasets of methylamphetamine usage and distribution patterns across 51 sites in capital city and regional areas across all states and territories. The analysis extends to 13 drug types and will give the first national evidence base of illicit drug usage and distribution | Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission, Australia

WA's raw sewerage testing reveals highest ice use in the nation

The study found the Perth daily consumption average was one dose per 17 people | Age, Australia

WA meth crisis: Perth woman's fightback from ice addiction

Even though she was in the middle of a drug-induced psychosis at the time, Dee-anne Allender can still clearly recall the turning point that helped her break free of her entrenched meth addiction | Perth Now, Australia

Booby-trapped cannabis plot found in Central Otago

Planks of wood with large nails sticking out have been found protecting a Central Otago cannabis plot near a popular children's play area | Stuff, New Zealand


Blogs, comment and opinion

Nicotine in the news

There has been some debate on the wires that the FDA Mission statement only seems to be concerned about reducing tobacco use by minors but not adults. The exact wording is “ FDA also has responsibility for regulating the manufacturing, marketing and distribution of tobacco products to protect the public health and to reduce tobacco use by minors” | NSP Blog, UK

Reflections about the Commission on Narcotic Drugs March 2017 (CND)

It was my second time at the UN. The first time I went was in April 2016 when I was invited by Transform Drug Policy Foundation to join them at the UNGASS, the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on Drugs. I always have had this fantastic idea about the United Nations. I wanted to work for them – once upon a time | Anyone's Child Blog, UK

Daily chart: Why smoking is still so widespread

Few countries have introduced genuinely strict measures to curb smoking. Just one has the full package | Economist Blog, UK

HIV and Hepatitis C are No Longer the Most Serious Infectious Threats to People Who Inject Drugs

I had dinner with my daughter Mimi the other evening, and was ruminating about how things have changed since I started work as an Infectious Diseases doctor around 25 years ago | NEJM, USA

New Research in Drug Enforcement

Tokin up in the 5280: Insight into how Denver police officers make sense of, and define, interpret, and react to the legalization of marijuana | Points Blog, USA

Safe injection sites: Readers weigh in

My heart goes out to Op-Ed writer Lisa DuFour [“I lost my son to a drug overdose: say no to safe injection sites,” March 18, Opinion] | Seattle Times letters, USA